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Make sanctions against Sentuo Oil Refinery public – COPEC, IES to NPA

Business & Finance Make sanctions against Sentuo Oil Refinery public – COPEC, IES to NPA
FEB 26, 2024 LISTEN

The Institute for Energy Security (IES) and the Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) have called on the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) to publish the list of sanctions it made against Chinese-owned Sentuo Oil Refinery.

IES and COPEC raised concerns on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, about the refinery operating without the appropriate permit from the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and also supplying alleged substandard fuel.

The two bodies threatened to petition the law courts to compel the refinery to do the right thing and also called on the Office of the Special Prosecutor to investigate the refinery's activities.

COPEC and IES in a statement on February 25 called on the NPA “to make public the full stream of sanctions imposed on SORL since it released the unwholesome products onto the Ghanaian market, as the said products are believed to be off specification.”

They are also calling for a compensation package for persons who have been affected by the bad oil products supplied by Sentuo.

“The NPA must be made aware of the fact that any such sanctions on the Chinese refinery must factor due and appropriate compensations to both Association Of Oil Marketing Companies and its members affected by the bad fuel and its attendant challenges on their facilities as well as the consumers who patronised these products and are currently grappling with one issue or the other on their engines.”

Below is the full joint press release. IES-COPEC JOINT PRESS RELEASE 25th February 2024, Accra IS THE NPA BEING ARM TWISTED TO DEFEND THE APPARENT WRONGS BY THE CHINESE RUN REFINERY SENTUO

MAKE PUBLIC THE SACTIONS IMPOSED ON SENTUO IF ANY AND INSTEAD WORK OPENLY TO PROTECT YOUR HARD-WON REPUTATION.

The Institute for Energy Security (IES) and the Chamber for Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) have sighted a faceless, unsigned public statement purported to be issued by the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and which attempts to reject the earlier position of IES and COPEC that it is playing soft with the Sentuo Oil Refinery Limited (SORL) to the detriment of consumers of petroleum products and the state.

The IES and COPEC maintain this earlier position and believes same to be true until the NPA applies all the necessary rules pertinent to the industry as it does with all other Ghanaian petroleum service providers (PSPs) strictly, without fear or favour to engender public trust as well as maintain the integrity of the downstream petroleum sector in order to protect the NPAs own hard-won reputation over the years.

To buttress the claim of Sentuo products causing damage to vehicles and complaints, as had earlier been asserted, the IES and COPEC refers to the bold statement released by the Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMCs) on 21st February 2024 bringing to the attention of the NPA chief executive the growing concerns of several of its members in relation to the said quality parametres and viscosity of Sentuo's petroleum products its members were supplied with.

According to the release by the AOMC, their complaints situates the inability of some of their petroleum service station dispensers or pumps to efficiently dispense Sentuo products as well as other quality issues resulting in a significant number of customer complaints effective 1st February 2024.

In the purported statement by the NPA, it contradicts its own initial claims of no wrong doing to bizzarely conclude that beyond the remedial actions taken on Sentuo out-of-specification products, it is also imposing additional sanctions on Sentuo Oil Refinery Limited (SORL).

One wonders, if indeed the Sentuo refinery products on the market is not a source of worry why the additional sanctions by the NPA?

To proceed, the IES and COPEC is requesting of the NPA to make public the full stream of sanctions imposed on SORL since it released the unwholesome products onto the Ghanaian market as the said products are believed to be off specification.

Further, the NPA in insisting Sentuo Refinery has acquired all due licenses to enable it put products onto the Ghanaian market is also entreated to publish both the Commercial licenses so granted and the Quality Assurance Certificate on the petroleum consignment in question, for the sake transparency and dispelling industry and consumer fears that the refinery is in a hurry to side step some regulatory protocols meant to ensure no rules of safety are bent using apparent arm twisting as we currently seeing.

Finally, the NPA must be made aware of the fact that any such sanctions on the Chinese refinery must factor due and appropriate compensations to both Association Of Oil Marketing Companies and its members affected by the bad fuel and its attendant challenges on their facilities as well as the consumers who patronised these products and are currently grappling with one issue or the other on their engines.

Anything short of ensuring the payment of these compensations will sure result in a legal suit on the refinery and our regulators in the coming days.

Signed: Nana Amoasi VII (Executive Director, IES) Mr. Duncan Amoah (Executive Secretary, COPEC)

—Citi Newsroom

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